HYDERABAD: As the stage is set for Higher Education Minister D. Srinivas to take over the reins of the Andhra Pradesh Congress Committee, former PCC president M. Satyanarayana Rao said Mr. Srinivas has a tough task ahead of him in strengthening the party’s rank and file in the run-up to the elections next year.

‘Coordination must’

It was essential for Mr. Srinivas to ensure that he coordinated effectively with Chief Minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy in key aspects as absence of cooperation between the two would not be in the interests of the party.

“They are like two eyes to the party and they should go together,” he said.

In a brief chat with reporters in the Assembly lobbies on Wednesday, Mr. Rao recalled his stint as the APCC president and said he had to toil day and night to strengthen the party.

This had ultimately helped Mr. Srinivas who succeeded him and the then CLP leader Dr. Reddy to effectively take on the Telugu Desam.

“Had I not done by bit, do you think the party would have come to power?” he asked, recalling that his work was appreciated by none other than Congress president Sonia Gandhi.

He dismissed reports that Mr. Srinivas’ appointment had been made to checkmate the Chief Minister claiming that it was the same duo that led the party during the previous elections.